Focus Issues

It Takes a Global Village to Fight Efforts to Subvert Open Government Policies

As we have seen in the United States, political transitions can be a precarious time for government openness and accountability. There are myriad ways that governments backslide, ranging from abandoning international agreements and multi-stakeholder initiatives, to threatening the independence of courts and legislative bodies, to direct attacks against journalists, civil society and political opponents.

OTG Town Hall: Exposing secret government surveillance and combating threats to privacy, civil liberties and civil rights

Join us for an OpenTheGovernment town hall to discuss efforts to combat secrecy and build consensus around ways to address constitutional threats stemming from warrantless government surveillance programs. Experts will provide insight into the policies and practices that give the FBI and domestic law enforcement access to information collected without a warrant, and the dangers this poses to privacy, civil liberties, and civil rights (RSVP here).

New report reveals growing government secrecy in immigration enforcement

A new report from the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) reveals that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is increasingly concealing information that was previously released to the public in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The report describes efforts by ICE to block access to information on immigration enforcement cooperation between federal and non-federal law enforcement agencies, exposing possible violations of the agency’s FOIA obligations.

To ensure accountability for use of lethal force, advocates look to Congress

So far, the Trump Administration has shown a willingness to accelerate the use of military force overseas, while continuing and sometimes expanding on the excessive secrecy of its predecessors.  As the number of civilian casualties from U.S. strikes grows at a shocking pace, government transparency and Congressional oversight may be the surest way to advance accountability in U.S. use of military force.